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Nottingham Tragedy: Valdo Calocane Sentenced Over Double Manslaughter

In sentencing at Nottingham Crown Court, Valdo Calocane, 32, has been detained at a high-security hospital after being convicted of the manslaughter of two Nottingham University students, Barnaby Webber and Grace O’Malley-Kumar, as well as school caretaker Ian Coates. The verdict was based on diminished responsibility due to Calocane’s paranoid schizophrenia.

The court heard that Calocane carried out a knife and van rampage on June 13, 2023, fatally stabbing the students and Mr. Coates. He also admitted three counts of attempted murder after hitting three pedestrians with a stolen van. Prosecutors accepted guilty pleas to manslaughter, not murder, acknowledging diminished responsibility.

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During the sentencing, Mr Justice Turner stressed the “unsurvivable” injuries inflicted on the students and the merciless ferocity with which Calocane stabbed Mr. Coates to death. The judge described the crimes as “sickening” and acknowledged the devastating impact on the victims’ families.

Calocane, who had a history of mental health issues, had been previously detained in a hospital four times but refused to take medication. The judge stated that Calocane, an intelligent man with a degree in mechanical engineering, would never be cured of his paranoid schizophrenia, underlining that he “remains dangerous.”

The sentencing also highlighted the need for more robust engagement by authorities, as Calocane had encounters with mental health services and law enforcement prior to the rampage. Nottinghamshire Police’s assistant chief constable, Rob Griffin, admitted that more could have been done to address the situation earlier.

The families of the victims expressed their grief and paid tribute to their loved ones, underlining the heroic actions of Grace O’Malley-Kumar, who tried to protect her friend during the attack.

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